Topa Inca

Inca emperor
Born: ?
Birthplace: probably Cuzco, Peru

Topa Inca, also known as Tupac Inca or Tupac Yupanqui, assumed the throne of the Inca Empire after the death of his father, Pachacuti or Pachacutec, in 1471. The tenth ruler of the Inca nation, Topa was a brilliant general, who personally led his troops into battle. In a series of bloody conflicts, Topa conquered a number of other Indian tribes to create an empire stretching nearly 2,000 mi, from northern Ecuador to central Chile. The territory included plateaus nearly 9,000 ft high in the Andes Mountains, coastal areas, and parts of Amazon jungle. Although he added more territory to the Inca Empire than any other ruler, Topa was never considered a god, as his father had been.

Topa sought to consolidate his vast realm into a unified nation. He greatly expanded the Inca network of roads, often connecting isolated coastal areas or remote mountain valleys with the rest of the empire. He built temples, grain storehouses, forts, and palaces for himself. By appropriating the best agricultural land in conquered areas, Topa increased the personal landholding of the emperor, thus enhancing his wealth and power. He created a new social organization of the peasantry, organizing them into groups of 10, 100, 1,000, and 10,000 people for administrative tasks, such as the census. His son, Huayna Capac, succeeded him.

Died: 1493